Clinical OMICS

MAY-JUN 2018

Healthcare magazine for research scientists, labs, pathologists, hospitals, cancer centers, physicians and biopharma companies providing news articles, expert interviews and videos about molecular diagnostics in precision medicine

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4 Clinical OMICs May/June 2018 News Thermo Fisher Launches International Childhood Oncology Network Thermo Fisher Scientific established the International Childhood Oncology Network (ICON) with the concurrent launch of its Oncomine Childhood Cancer Research Assay, a next-generation sequencing (NGS) targeted panel developed in collaboration with Chil- dren's Hospital Los Angeles to identify pediatric and young adult cancers. The goal of ICON is to help foster a global community of academic and clinical researchers focused on pediatric and young adult cancers via sharing of data, best practices, and experiment pro- tocols. According to a press release from Thermo Fisher Scientific announcing the launch of ICON, research into these types of cancers has lagged behind research into adult can- cer, perhaps due to their different causes. "While adult cancers are commonly carcinomas with mutations that accumulate over time, childhood cancers are most often embryonic or neuro-ectodermal in origin and are largely driven by gene fusions," the release noted. n Curetis MDx Wins FDA Clearance for Lower Respiratory Tract Infection Curetis will launch its Unyvero System and Lower Respiratory Tract Infection (LRT) Application Cartridge in the U.S. this quarter after the FDA granted the molec- ular diagnostic a de novo clearance. The FDA nod marks the first time the agency has granted clearance to market an auto- mated molecular diagnostic test for the atypical microorganism Legionella pneu- moniae, and other lower respiratory tract infections. According to Curetis, the test covers more than 90% of infection cases of hospitalized patients with pneumonia and provides clinicians with a compre- hensive overview on genetic antibiotic resistance markers detected. "The launch of our Unyvero System and LRT Application Cartridge in the United States will address a pressing unmet med- ical need as it delivers results much faster than current standard of care microbiolo- gy culture," Curetis co-founder and COO Johannes Bacher said. n tists haven't yet uncovered, however, are the mechanisms that underpin the genetic and environmental risks for RA, "let alone the synergism between these two factors." Existing RA therapies target the inflammation, but the University of Michigan studies point to a novel potential approach to targeting bone destruction. "Once we have better drugs that directly and specifically address bone destruction in this dis- ease, we'll have better treatment," Holoshitz adds. The team is already carrying out preclinical tests with potential drug molecules, he explains. "As a sep- arate project, we have a couple of early-stage drug candidates that block the HLA gene-activated pathway and are effective in pre- venting bone damage. These drugs almost completely inhibit experi- mental rheumatoid arthritis and bone damage in mice. By understanding the mechanisms, we may be able to develop better inhibitors to prevent disease and identify therapeutic tar- gets for new treatment strategies." (continued from previous page) comussu / Getty Images chanut iamnoy / Getty Images

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